Are you stressed from an out of control classroom?
The process of building a personal system that consistently produces student achievement may take a minute to manufacture, but for the sake of reducing stress, getting the boss off our back, or saving our weekends for a ‘life’, we’re in a constant search for better ways to make the process less stressful. In short we are simply too invested with all the other things of our life to afford not having students learning. We need to be leaders more than ever before.
K – 12 Education: Stressed Out Series 6.0
For now, lets take a look at how you might go through the process of regaining an out of control classroom. However, before doing that, may I ask you a question? What exactly would you call out of control? This is important, because, defining control will determine the process of establishing a classroom community with limited conflicts.
Last year I worked with a teacher that described her out of control classroom as the group that she wasn’t able to keep from repeatedly getting out of their seats, talking with each other during her lessons, and texting when they were suppose to be working. Does any of that sound familiar?
This teacher, lets call her Ms. Ann, was feeling the pressures of fitting into the title of being highly qualified and was associating low student achievement with her inability to limit distractions. Once we were able to identify her stressors we looked at two things. First, was if these occurrences alone caused students to fail. Secondly, was it causing her to loose focus of the learning process?
What we discovered was that her true source of stress with students getting out of their seats was that the noise of the pencil sharpener (she was fortunate to have one that worked) threw off her concentration. It throws mine off to, but I also believe pencil sharpening noise is probably more of a distraction for me coming from a culture of quiet libraries and neat rows of orderly students than it is discomforting for my 21st century learners.
You see by separating her perception of how learning should go down, from how the learner learns best, helped us to enhance her quality as a teacher. Once we clearly identified Ms. Ann’s problems, we were able to create actions in her daily process of managing her management verses managing her classroom’s behaviors.
What actions do you take for reducing the loss of valuable learning time?
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